The new word of mouth is the social web site. Facebook alone, the 800 pound gorilla of social media, accounts for a full one fourth of all mouse clicks that are performed by United States Internet users. If you have a design-related website or blog and have not started using social networking websites to promote your website or blog, you may be missing out on huge amounts of free traffic to your website. As the world of commerce increasingly becomes more and more digital (and mobile), effective digital marketing using social media is essential to any business which hopes to have longevity going forward into the next generation of consumers.

Below are some tips on how you can promote your website using social websites.

List your website on professional, as well as general social websites :

Every designer interested in using social networking to promote their design-related website or blog should create a separate professional Facebook profile that will allow them to create new business connections and nurture the existing ones, and also create a group with their website or blog name and start promoting their content to a wide audience. Facebook is home to more than 750 million active users worldwide and it is extremely popular amongst designers, so designers that have not started using Facebook as a promotional tool should jump on the bandwagon as soon as possible.

Twitter is another excellent place to promote your website and its content. People like to communicate in real time. If your communication with your website visitors is in real time, they will visit your website more often and will be less likely to miss the new content and features on your website or blog. Twitter is also a great place to network with other successful designers, visit their websites and learn from them.

LinkedIn, as the leader in professional websites, is the obvious example of a web site that your company must be on. However, many industries have niche web sites which target their audience more directly, and these are not to be overlooked. Though they may not reach as many people as LinkedIn, the audience is already looking for what you have, and turnover, retention and clickthrough will be much higher.

These days no discussion about social websites can go without mentioning Google+, which is still in the beta phase, but it is speculated that it will be at least equally popular as Facebook, so make sure to create a professional account on Google+ and start using it to promote your website.

Popular social websites most designers use are Design Float and Design Bump. Design Float is more of a social story sharing website. Design Float can be used by designers to share design-related articles and information, so it is a great social marketing tool that can be used to promote a design-related website. Another popular social website dedicated to designers is Design Bump. Designers who use Design Bump get to vote on other design-related links. By using Design Bump, individuals can promote new content on their websites easily and, more importantly, the content will be available to their target audience, which is also crucial when promoting a website.

Advertising :

Apart from creating profiles on popular social websites and adding content to them, you should also consider advertising on social websites in order to attract a greater number of people to your website. Facebook banners have been shown to have much more effectiveness than banners on other sites, because of the friend to friend nature of the web site. And as Facebook develops its ad targeting algorithms, your Facebook banners are more likely to be seen by people who are already predisposed to your website content, product or services.

The wealth of information and analysis :

On social media sites, people are giving you the language in which they wish to be “seduced.” The real time nature and relative anonymity of social media gives people the excuse to say exactly how they feel, and what they need to be improved. You do not even have to solicit these responses; simply be there and they will come.

People talk online using the phrases that they will place in search engine queries in order to find a business solution. They tell you exactly how they would do things better. They tell you exactly why they like you. They tell you about their demographics and psycho graphics, so you can see for yourself exactly what kind of person is attracted to your website. Using this information, you can direct your promotional efforts to simply give your audience exactly what they ask for.

Linking your web together :

After you create your profile/fan pages on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and your niche social media sites, you want to create a web that leads your target audience to your landing page. Keep different information on each page so that each page contains content that will keep the visitor interested. However, make sure that your branding remains constant throughout. Use links judiciously, as the content on social websites and other websites on which your site is listed define your website as much as its content does.

The popularity of social networking websites and the numerous ways they can be used for marketing make them one of the most effective tools for promoting a website. Individuals and business owners with design-related websites should truly consider and learn how to use the benefits of using social networking as a free promotional tool to market their websites and blogs.

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